Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Nets Don't Take Spurs Too Lightly

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Nets Don't Take Spurs Too Lightly

Article excerpt

NEW YORK -- The names on the back of the jerseys were not familiar -- some of them were hardly recognizable.

But the Nets were taking nothing for granted Thursday night. Not against the San Antonio Spurs. Not after the way they've been dominated for the last decade.

"Man, I'm not going to lie to you," Nets forward Andray Blatche said. "I don't think I've ever beat them in my career. I've got to check."

Brooklyn beat the short-handed Spurs, 103-89, at Barclays Center, snapping a six-game losing streak against San Antonio. As for Blatche, who has played nine NBA seasons with the Nets and Wizards, this was the first time he played in a win over San Antonio.

It was the Nets' 12th win in 16 games, and the franchise's first win over San Antonio since March 29, 2010; the Nets had lost 20 of their past 21 games against the Spurs -- even though this squad didn't look much like the San Antonio team the league had come to know.

Tim Duncan (rest), Manu Ginobili (hamstring) and Tony Parker (back) -- men who have tormented the Nets for years -- sat out. In fact, the Spurs could only dress 10 because of injury and illness less than 24 hours after a double-overtime win in Washington.

There were some rough moments for the Nets (22-25), but in the end they did what they were supposed to do: beat the wounded Spurs (36-14).

Alan Anderson led the Nets with a game-high 22 points off the bench, Paul Pierce had 12 and Deron Williams finished with 16 points and eight assists. Cory Joseph, typically a role player, led the Spurs with 18 points.

Since getting blown out by San Antonio on New Year's Eve to fall to 10-21, the Nets have been one of the best teams in the NBA. But not everyone is impressed.

Most notably, Charles Barkley.

"Listen, the Nets stink, man," Barkley said Thursday afternoon in a conference call promoting TNT's coverage of next weekend's All- Star Game. …

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